Posted 07 October 2005 - 12:12 PM
My parents took me and my brother to my first game at Brendan Byrne arena waaaaaaaay back in 1983 when I was 13. Although they got spanked by the Flyers (they pretty much got spanked by everyone back then...they won all of 17 games in each of their first two seasonS in New Jersey), I was hooked instantly. I didn't know a whole lot about hockey back then...all I knew was that the Islanders were awesome (they were right in the middle of their 4-Cup run), and that the Rangers didn't really appeal to me.
I didn't get to see them a whole lot from 1983-88, but went to a game here and there and followed their progress during that time. I remember at the beginning of the 1987-88 season, when the Devils were in first place with a 12-5-2 record, thinking "Wow, here we go, we've finally arrived!" Then they slumped and went back to being the same old Devils...until they replace Doug Carpenter with Jim Schoenfeld and brought up Sean Burke. And since my dad had just ordered Sportschannel, I was now watching as many games as I could. It was during that crazy stretch when John MacLean scored his overtime winner against Darren Pang to put the Devils into the playoffs that I really and truly became a Devils fanatic. That playoff run was insane...the donut incident...John MacLean's belated ascendance...Sean Burke...missing the Cup final by one game...I still remember so much of that season. To this day Johnny Mac remains my favorite player. I remember feeling physically ill during a pregame show when he announced that he didn't want to be a checker and had asked to be traded.
Anyway, I got my license on June 24, 1987 and have been driving myself to Devils games ever since. At one point I lived in Clifton and went to almost every home game during the 92-93 and 93-94 seasons. I'll always remember June 24, 1995 fondly...my 25th birthday and the day the Devils won Cup #1. And since I had tickets for the last two rounds of the playoffs that year, I got to see it all. I love baseball (Mets) and football (Patriots), but no sport and no team get me as fired up as ice hockey and the Devils do. Best sport and best team ever!
Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976, 07 October 2005 - 12:14 PM.
THE NHL MUST LOVE THE DEVILS - from who else? A RANGER fan!
[Mark Messier]: A big, bald attention whore with a stupid Easter Island-lookin face. - from who else? DaneykoIsGod!
Even when Marty comes back maybe Larry should put Clemmensen to be on the goal during the shootouts.
Can the coach do that ? Switch the goalies 5 seconds to go in overtime? - Most priceless quote ever posted on a message board.
Martin Brodeur: THE MOST ALL-TIME WINS!, 12 straight seasons of 30+ wins, 3 Stanley Cups, 4 Vezina Trophies, and zero respect from too many so-called Devils "fans" who are either too young or too bandwagon to remember the much darker days of Sean Burke, Craig Billington, Bob Sauve, Alain Chevrier, and the talented but overwhelmed Chico Resch, among many others.
It's easy to support a great player when he's playing at his very best. It takes a true fan to support that same player during those rare moments and stretches when he's not. Babe Ruth went 0-4 some games, and sometimes Wayne Gretzky was held pointless. There may be such a thing as greatness, but no such thing as absolute perfection every single night.
20 out of 1,946 njdevs.com members agree: CR1976 is the Most Knowledgable Poster of 2008! Victory is mine...oh yes, victory is mine!